books of the month
Search our site
Persons Unknown by Susie Steiner Read the opening extract of the brand new Susie Steiner book before its publication on 05/04/2018

Lyrics Alley by Leila Aboulela

Lyrics Alley

Literary Fiction   Reading Groups   eBook Favourites   
Download an extract Discuss on Facebook Discuss this book on our Literary Contemporary Facebook group Share this book

Lovereading view...

The current situation in Africa and the Middle East is very much at odds with this nostalgic, lyrical and deeply moving novel by a twice ORANGE-listed rising star. Set in pre-Independence Sudan, Egypt and post-war Britain with its subtly written characters we think it is a perfect choice for reading groups.

If you like Leila Aboulela you might also like to read books by Hari Kunzru, Abdulrazak Gurnah and Manil Suri.


Lyrics Alley by Leila Aboulela

Set in 1950s Sudan, LYRICS ALLEY is the story of the powerful and sprawling Abuzeid dynasty.

With Mahmoud Bey at its helm, the family can do no wrong. But when Mahmoud's son, Nur - the brilliant, charming heir to his business empire - suffers a near-fatal accident, his hopes of university and a glittering future are dashed. Subsequently, his betrothal to his cousin and sweetheart, Soraya is broken off. As British rule is coming to an end, and the country is torn between modernising influences and the call of traditions past, the family is divided. Mahmoud's second wife, Nabilah, longs to return to Egypt and leave behind the dust of 'backward-looking' Sudan. His first wife, Waheeba, is confined to her open-air kitchen and resents Nabilah's influence on Mahmoud. Meanwhile, Nur must find a way to live again in the world and find peace. Moving from the villages of Sudan to cosmopolitan Cairo and a decimated post-colonial Britain, this is a sweeping tale of love, loss, faith and reconciliation.


Leila Aboulel's delightful novel explores the relationship between the personal and the political in a time of upheaval * INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY * A sophisticated and emotionally resonant tale. * SUNDAY HERALD *

About the Author

Leila Aboulela was born in 1964 in Cairo and grew up in Khartoum. She came to England to study at the LSE and now lives between Doha and Aberdeen.

More books by this author
Author 'Like for Like' recommendations

Loading similar books...
Loading other formats...

Book Info

Publication date

2nd February 2012


Leila Aboulela

More books by Leila Aboulela
Author 'Like for Like'

Author's Website

Author's Facebook Latest

Loading facebook updates...


Phoenix (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd ) an imprint of Orion Publishing Co


336 pages


Literary Fiction
Reading Groups
eBook Favourites

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)



Lovereading are lovely people who send me lovely books. What's not to love?

Gavin Dimmock

It's a lively, independent website with reviews, recommendations and more - with a huge range of books available to buy in all formats.

Alison Layland

As for why I'd recommend Lovereading, it's simple - it's a great place to get information and reviews about new books!

Margaret Freeman

Books of the month/debuts of the month, kids/adults, fiction/non-fiction, free prize draws and free extracts, what's not to love?

Emma Smith

It has opened my eyes to different authors and genres. Just log on and try, you will be surprised and not want for reading material again.

Jocelyn Garvey

Lovereading always comes up with great suggestions and has introduced me to enjoyable books and new authors to discover.

Gaynor Passmore

It's the first site that I visit when deciding on the next set of books to buy. A particular treat is being able to download an extract.

Tessa Olson

If you LOVE reading then you will love LOVEREADING! It's a 'novel' idea. Seriously though I could not recommend them enough.

Rebecca Whymark